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March 27, 2014
Spring is officially here, on the calendar anyway.  Warm weather is just around the corner and personally, I cannot wait.  In the meantime, a lot has been going on in the Village and I am long overdue with sending an email.

Natural Gas

As many of you are aware, there has been the smell of natural gas (technically the smell is mercaptan that is added to the odorless natural gas) for many years in the Main Street area.  The Irvington Fire Department and Police Department have respond to the area near Cottenet Street dozens of times to investigate and take readings to detect natural gas.  Often they have detected readings and contacted Consolidated Edison who have responded and attempted to repair any leaks.  In the past 12 months alone, they have repaired two such leaks.  After the recent gas leak related tragedy in Harlem, the Village administration, along with our fire and police chief, asked Con Edison to revisit the area since there was still the smell of gas, even if it was barely detectable with our monitoring devices.  As you can imagine, Con Edison takes this issue very seriously and assured us that they would follow up as soon as possible.

I’m pleased to report that, true to their word,  Con Edison is devoting increased resources in an effort to track down the long-standing, persistent smells of gas in the Main Street area, particularly in the vicinity of Cottenet Street.  Unfortunately Con Edison has been unable to locate the source of the smells, although we have been repeatedly advised that this is not a hazardous situation.  The Village will continue to work closely with Con Edison to encourage a more coordinated effort to locate the source of the gas smells and fix the problem(s) permanently.  I will ensure that Con Edison continues to focus its efforts until these problems are fixed.  In the longer term, Con Edison is looking at replacing the gas main on Main Street and have already scheduled (for 2016) replacing the main between Dutcher and Cottenet as well as between Grinnell and Croton.

Con Ed would like us to remind you to call 1-800-75CONED if ever smell gas.  They also put together a video on gas safety: http://bcove.me/cc1usj6o

Penguin Plunge – Sunday April 6th at 1pm

While the winter has been brutal and we all have been looking forward to the return of warm weather, there is still one more cold weather event on the Village Calendar: the third Penguin Plunge.  The wintry conditions in the Matthiessen Park have necessitated that the Plunge be pushed back twice. The current date is now April 6th, 2014, with festivities kicking off at 1pm.  While April 6th may be downright balmy compared to the original date of March 1st, I checked the temperature of the Hudson River last week and it was still 35 degrees.  So, while the April 6th date will be much better for the spectators, rest assured, the water will still be cold enough to punish plungers like myself.  The good news is there is still time to plunge or make a donation, the website is www.irvingtonplunge.com.  Remember, donations go to restore programs and events that were cut from the Irvington Parks and Recreation’s budget.  These programs and events affect all residents from seniors to toddlers.   Programs restored last year included  transportation to the Senior program, Open Gym for teens, summer camp scholarships, $15,000 towards the July 4th Community Fireworks celebration and $30,000 to meet revenue projections for Park & Recreation Department's budget.  I hope to see you at the Plunge!

Shortly, I will be writing to you about our tentative budget that was released last week.  In the meantime, if you would like to look at it, you can find it here: http://irvingtonny.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=900

Brian C. Smith, Mayor
Village of Irvington